Feeds

So fondleable Windows 8 didn't work out so well: Why not try it IN 3D?

Upstart wants $100,000 to whack finger-following cam onto PCs, mobes

Mobile application security vulnerability report

Video A San Francisco-based startup has come up with a gadget it claims can turn any surface into a 3D interface for your PC or mobile device – and it wants $100,000 in funding to get the thing off the drawing board.

Haptix Touch is a camera-based detection system. The point is to replace the mouse with fingers waved around within the range of the Haptix sensor. It's a compelling idea, as Fingerworks demonstrated with its Touch Stream product (on which this article is being typed) that does exactly them same thing – only without the cameras.

In their first day on Kickstarter Haptix has raised $65k of the $100k it needs to turn its working prototypes into production units. The sensor clips to the top of a laptop screen, pointing down, and plots the location of the fingers - like a Leap Motion, only upside down and with a different objective, as the video demonstrates:

Sony's PlayStation 3 keypad could also be stroked and used as a touchpad, but only in the most basic of ways. When it comes to recognising gestures enacted on a keyboard surface Fingerworks led the field, and patented all the obvious ones.

Apple bought that patent portfolio, along with the remnants of Fingerworks, in 2005 - a year or so before the iPhone was launched. Some of the technology was wound into Apple's new product, but most of the Fingerworks patents refer specifically to gestures made on a "keyboard" so have been useless in the patent wars with Samsung et al.

Haptix Touch is intended to sit above a keyboard and can even work in 3D. It could potentially fall foul of Apple's acquired patents, as well as more recent filings from Cupertino.

Anyone who's used a Fingerworks will know the intuitiveness of dropping two fingers into the keyboard to summon a mouse pointer, or three to scroll down a page. With Fingerworks out of production the Haptix Touch is the best opportunity to achieve that. Just get one quickly before the Cupertino lawyers notice them. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Report: American tech firms charge Britons a thumping nationality tax
Without representation, too. Time for a Boston (Lincs) Macbook Party?
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Apple gets patent for WRIST-PUTER: iTime for a smartwatch
It does everything a smartwatch should do ... but Apple owns it
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
Seventh-gen SPARC silicon will accelerate Oracle databases
Uncle Larry's mutually-optimised stack to become clearer in August
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.